Meet Joseph Edwards, Executive VP, and Anthony Coco, President, of Cojeaux Cinemas, who are planning the Alamo Drafthouse expansion in Washington D.C.! You can read the press release about the new Drafthouse franchise partner here. I had a chance to talk to them about their plans. Read below for the interview.
Can you talk a little about your overall plan for expansion in DC?
Cojeaux Cinemas' first location will be opening during the first quarter of 2013 in Ashburn, Virginia. We have plans to open two additional Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas in the next 5 years within the Washington DC Metropolitan Area. We are currently in preliminary negotiations for sites in Washington D.C. proper, Maryland, and Northern Virginia.
What drew you to the Drafthouse model?
All the partners of Cojeaux Cinemas have either lived or spent significant time in the Austin area, where Alamo originated. Our mindset has always been that when we see a film, we see it at an Alamo Drafthouse. The concept has developed a cult–like following and an experience unrivaled in the movie industry. The special events and in-theater service of craft beer and fantastic food really set Alamo apart. That said, we decided to do our part and bring the experience to the Washington Metro Area.
What makes the DC area a prime market for the Alamo Drafthouse?
Cojeaux Cinemas is attracted to the DC Metro Area for a number of reasons. We feel the area lacks the movie going experience Alamo Drafthouse has to offer, as do many cities across the country. The culture and people have both the mindset and sophistication level that we look for in an Alamo customer. In our opinion, the market also has fantastic demographics, as well as, a growing economy.
Are you looking to buy existing theaters or build from the ground up?
Cojeaux Cinemas is looking at any viable real estate options available within the DC Metro Area. We will do whatever it takes to efficiently and successfully bring this fantastic experience to the Washington area. Our first location to open will be eight screens, approximately 30,000 square feet, and built ground up as part of a new, exciting development.
What are your programming plans? Do you intend to do specialty programming as well as first run films?
Cojeaux Cinemas will absolutely show first run films, as well as specialty programming utilizing state of the art digital technology. Special programming and events are at the core of what Alamo Drafthouse offers, and we cannot wait to share these experiences with the Washington DC Metro Area. We will collaborate with the Alamo Drafthouse home office, to offer unforgettable experiences through original pre-show entertainment, first run digital films, special programming and events, craft beers, and a delicious menu that has something for everyone.